Thursday, June 28, 2012

Marigold Festival Grand Marshal

Richard (Dick) and Dorothy Barker were nominated as Grand Marshals in 2011 and again this year because of their extensive involvement in the community.  Both were retired teachers from Pekin Community High School where Dick was a math teacher and chairman of the PCHS math department.  He also taught evening computer science classes at ICC for 15 years and worked as realtor in Pekin for 10 years serving as president of the Pekin Area Board of Realtors in 1997.  Dorothy served on the PCHS Board of Education for 12 years after her retirement from Pekin High.  Both Dick and Dorothy were former members of the National Education association, Illinois Education Association and Pekin Teachers’ Alliance as well as other professional organizations.

Both Dick and Dorothy were active members of the St. Paul United Church of Christ.  Both were also active volunteers for TAPS and most recently served on the committee for the 10th Annual TAPS Wine & Dine fundraiser held May 6th.the 10th annual TAPS Wine and Dine fundraiserthe 10th annual TAPS Wine and Dine fundraiserthe 10th annual TAPS Wine and Dine fundraiser 

The Barkers have been generous with their time, talents and funds.  Besides their church and TAPS, some of the clubs and organizations that benefited from the Barkers’ involvement include:  Pekin Civic Chorus (co-producer, stage manager, singer, board member, set designer), Friends in Harmony (board member, set designer, singer), Corn Stock Theater (stage manager), Committee for the Historical Preservation of Pekin, United Way, House of Hope and Pekin Country Club.  They acted as “in house” decorators for many organizations, often donating much of the decorating materials.  They also rehabbed many homes before and after their retirement from teaching, and Dick received the Pekin Bicentennial Commission Award in May 1976 for restoring the George Herget Home. 

Unfortunately, after a battle with acute leukemia Dick passed away on April 30, 2012.  The Pekin Marigold Festival Committee received their year’s nomination well before Dick’s passing and felt that having Mrs. Barker accept for the two of them was appropriate and well-deserved.